Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
The male necro-gaze in Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace 
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
2019 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Abstract

This essay expands on previous research concerning male sexuality in Alias Grace. By applying Rebecca E. May’s term “necro-gaze” on three of Margaret Atwood’s male characters, Dr. Jordan, Jamie Walsh and Reverend Verringer, this essay argues that they do not only sexualize female bodies but that they specifically sexualize female bodies they perceive as dead or dying. May bases the term necro-gaze on Laura Mulvey’s “male-gaze” but uses it on literature instead of film. May’s aim is to expand the understanding of how men control women through sexual objectification. Previous studies have discussed the matter of female oppression and liberation in Alias Grace as well as establishing the male characters as being oppressive, taking liberties of women’s bodies, and objectifying their bodies. Dr. Jordan’s narrative has also been shown to be voyeuristic and sadistic in depicting females as either edible or disgusting. This essay contributes a new perspective on female objectification and male sexuality in the novel by arguing that Dr. Jordan, Jamie Walsh and Reverend Verringer not only sexualize female bodies but rather sexualize dead or dying female bodies.

Dr. Jordan repeatedly finds sexual pleasure in fantasizing about women who are being strangled, dissected, dying or already dead. Furthermore, Dr. Jordan is attracted to the fact that Grace is a potential murderess. Listening to Grace’s story gives him the opportunity to wallow in the gory details of the murder of Nancy Montgomery. Jamie Walsh marries Grace out of guilt for testifying against her in the trials, but also to find sexual pleasure in listening to her stories of violence towards herself and other women. Reverend Verringer, who dedicated his life to help Grace being released from prison, also finds indirect pleasure in being close to a murderess. In portraying male sexuality like this, Atwood illustrates the history of men’s objectification of the female body.

Keywords: Margaret Atwood; Alias Grace; necro-gaze; male sexuality; male gaze

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. , p. 20
Keywords [en]
Margaret Atwood; Alias Grace; necro-gaze; male sexuality; male gaze
National Category
Humanities and the Arts
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-178389OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-178389DiVA, id: diva2:1388688
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2020-02-09 Created: 2020-01-27 Last updated: 2020-02-09Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

sammanfattning(73 kB)1 downloads
File information
File name SUMMARY01.pdfFile size 73 kBChecksum SHA-512
47d82c5a298c37b6f258af1fd8683c2e0fed4679dff18539c4edb9005750fa190744e81870915e5ca8c77b9a5854b83534e686c82db34ea13320a58c8444a104
Type summaryMimetype application/pdf

By organisation
Department of English
Humanities and the Arts

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

urn-nbn

Altmetric score

urn-nbn
Total: 4 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf